Queens Park Rangers
Loftus Road 

Ground No. 27 (return visit)
Visited - Tuesday 22nd February 2005
Result - Queens Park Rangers 1-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers
Competition - Coca-Cola Championship
Attendance - 15,029

Despite having visited Loftus Road when Fulham were tenants, I hadn't actually seen QPR there, so officially this was a new ground for me.

After arriving into London early, I got to the ground for about 2:30pm to take pictures whilst it was still light. Unfortunately when ringing the club up about a week previously they had said that I wouldn’t be allowed to go into the stadium, so going around the outside was getting kind of frustrated knowing that the pictures of the inside would come out poor seeing as they would have to be taken after dark. Luck however was on my side, when in the corner of the South Africa Road Stand I noticed that a gate was open, so after checking for anyone around, quickly nipped in and found myself walking down a tunnel, and coming out next to the pitch. There were a few people around inside, mostly cleaners and stewards, but nobody said anything, so was free to walk around all of the stands taking pictures.

Buoyed by this, I left the ground in a good mood, and went back into Central London for a few hours before coming back to the ground later on to meet a couple of friends in the Springbok pub. After having a few drinks in there, we went in to the ground with a few minutes to spare before kick off, and found our seats, which were positioned quite well, just below the overhang of the upper tier and to the left of the goal.

The ground was just as I'd remembered it, however like before I really couldn’t really make my mind up whether I liked it or not. On the one hand, it is a tidy stadium, being all enclosed, and it certainly has character with all of the stands being a slightly different design, (except the two goal stands), and the proximity to the pitch is as good as anywhere else, but on the other hand I'm just not sure. It certainly isn’t a modern ground, facilities are basic and cramped, and it is starting to look its age a bit, combine this with poor leg/width room in the seats and it can create a bad impression, but on the whole it’s better than a lot of places.

After taking a few more pictures the game got underway and we went straight on the attack, going close before wasting a couple of corners, but it was the home side that took the lead on 11 minutes after a defensive lapse let Kevin Gallen in to score. The rest of the half was scrappy, with neither team really dominating, but it was QPR who looked most dangerous going forward, whilst we offered nothing really, rarely threatening Simon Royce in the Rangers goal.

The second half started much the same as the first had ended, with both sides looking second rate, and not being helped by a referee and linesman who were stopping the game at every given opportunity, but on 78 minutes, a double substitution helped turn the tide in our favour, with Carl Cort and Kevin Cooper coming on to offer us more going forward. 

After seeing a headed effort hit the inside of the post and agonisingly roll across the line, only to be cleared, Cort got the equaliser with a nice finish from the edge of the box into the corner of the goal. With us back in it, there was a frantic finish, with both teams looking for a winner, but it was to finish 1-1, which was probably a fair reflection of the game.
Throughout there had been a good amount of singing from the home fans, but we didn’t really make any noise unfortunately, so it wasn’t the best of atmospheres, which was a shame, as you felt the design of the ground really could have made a lot of noise.

After leaving the ground, we went back to White City underground station, and made it back to Euston with plenty of time to spare, getting the train back, and arriving home in the early hours.

Overall it had been quite a good trip, shame about the result, as watching Wolves at the moment really is a testing experience, with there being a generally unpleasant mood at the club, but despite my conflicting thoughts, it’s a good ground to visit, with friendly home fans, so hopefully I’ll get the chance to go back there again one of the days.

Welcome to Loftus Road

Layout of the Ground

Rear of the South Africa Road Stand

Main Entrance to the Ground

The Club Shop

Looking down Ellerslie Road

Away turnstiles for the School End

Rear of the Ellerslie Road Stand

Turnstiles for the Loftus Road End

The School End

The Ellerslie Road Stand

The Loftus Road End

The South Africa Road Stand

The South Africa Road Stand

The Loftus Road End

The Ellerslie Road Stand


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